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Scottish Fold vs British Shorthair—explaining the difference

If you are puzzled by the similarities between a British Shorthair cat and a Scottish Fold, you are not alone. The resemblance between the two is considerable, but they are still two different breeds.

Feline connoisseurs will probably immediately drop Scottish Fold vs British Shorthair facts that may sound too technical and incomprehensible to an untrained ear. Since future or curious cat parents need a simple explanation of the differences between these two breeds, Untamed has made it its mission to make it available.

Our detailed guide will tell you all you need to know about the visual and temperamental qualities of Scottish Fold and British Shorthair cats. You will also learn about their upkeep and dietary needs, so you know how to create a perfect home for your new companion.

Scottish Fold vs British Shorthair—physical differences

They say we are the same, but I can find at least ten differences. For a start, one has to be prettier.

Source: PublicDomainPictures

If you see a fully grown British Shorthair and a Scottish Fold next to each other, you will immediately notice that the British Shorthair lacks folded ears. Scottish Folds are known for their ears that fold down toward the front of their head. You will also see that a British Shorthair cat is typically larger and heavier.

An overview of the most striking characteristics of Scottish Fold and British Shorthair cats

Check out the table below to see the physical traits of these two breeds:

Physical features

British Shorthair

Scottish Fold


  • Male: 2.0–7.7 kg
  • Female: 1.9–5.5 kg
  • Male: 4.0–5.8 kg
  • Female: 2.7–4.0 kg


30–46 centimetres

20–25 centimetres

(nose to tail)

55.8–63.5 centimetres

25–30 centimetres


Wide at the bottom, narrow and rounded at the top

Wide at the bottom, pointy at the top, but folded toward the front of the head


  • Large, rounded, and expressive
  • Orange-amber colour is the most common, but they can also have blue or green eyes (depending on the fur colour)
  • Round, bright, and clear
  • The most common colours include:
    • Blue
    • Green
    • Gold


Medium length with a thick base, slightly tapered, with a rounded tip

Tapered with a rounded tip

Body type

  • Rounded and thick
  • Big-boned and muscular
  • Round-looking
  • Medium-boned

Face shape

Round and slightly brachiocephalic 


Coat texture

  • Short, dense
  • Plush-like
  • Short, medium, or long
  • Soft, plush-like fur
  • Medium and long-haired cats are silkier

Coat and eye colour combinations

  • Black and blue—orange, amber, or gold eyes
  • Chocolate and lilac—orange, amber, or gold eyes
  • Cinnamon and fawn—orange, amber, or gold eyes
  • Red and cream—orange, amber, or gold eyes
  • Colourpoint—blue eyes
  • Silver tabby—green, hazel, orange, amber, or gold eyes
  • Silver—green eyes
  • Golden—green eyes
  • Copper—green eyes 
  • White—green, blue, or orange eyes
  • White—blue, copper, or gold eyes
  • Black and blue—copper or gold eyes
  • Red and cream—gold or copper eyes
  • Chocolate and lilac—copper or gold eyes
  • Cinnamon and fawn—copper or gold eyes
  • Chinchilla Silver—green or blue-green eyes
  • Chinchilla Golden—green or blue-green eyes

British Shorthair and Scottish Fold—personality distinction

Unlike that lazy goof, I actually get up and play sometimes.

Source: Sophkins

Both the British Shorthair and the Scottish Fold are calm, quiet, and stable felines, but this is where their similarities in personality end. 

These felines differ in terms of:

  1. Temperament
  2. Activity levels

British Shorthair vs Scottish Fold temperament

British Shorthairs are not your typical lap cats. They enjoy an occasional pet but won't demand your constant and undivided attention—they would rather follow you around and monitor your activities. These felines are also independent and are not big on affection display. It doesn't mean they don't love you—British Shorthairs are extraordinarily loyal and attached to their cat parents. They just don't enjoy being picked up and held.

While British Shorthairs are more reserved, Scottish Folds are pure sweetness. They love to cuddle (but not excessively) and are more playful. Unlike their lookalikes, these felines need more attention and can become sad and lonely if left alone for too long.

Scottish Fold vs British Shorthair activity levels

Both of these breeds are relatively lazy, but British Shorthairs take the lead. They will both play, but a Scottish Fold will display more enthusiasm for playtime while your British Shorthair will need more encouragement. Unless something goes terribly wrong, neither of these kitties will resort to mischief or destructive tendencies.

If there is one flaw these cats have, it's their laziness, especially in the case of British Shorthair, and particularly as they grow older. This trait makes them prone to obesity and accompanying illnesses, such as diabetes, heart disease, joint degeneration, and similar.

British Shorthair and Scottish Fold—health and life expectancy

Both breeds are generally healthy, but British Shorthairs tend to be sturdier. 

Scottish Folds tend to develop degenerative joint disease, i.e. cartilage deformity (responsible for their folded ears), which can affect their limbs and tail. The tail can be particularly sensitive, so you should never pull it during playtime. Due to joint disease, Scottish Folds are also more predisposed to develop arthritis.

As for diseases that British Shorthairs are more susceptible to, they often suffer from gum issues, and males should also be tested for haemophilia B.

British Shorthairs are also in the lead in terms of longevity, with an expected lifespan between 14 and 20 years, while Scottish Folds usually live between 9 and 12 years.

Caring for a British Shorthair and a Scottish Fold

Unless you get a long-haired Scottish Fold, these kitties and British Shorthairs have the same grooming requirements.

Source: Anna Kumpan

As a cat parent, you need to consider your felines:

  1. Grooming requirements
  2. Dietary needs

British Shorthair and Scottish Fold grooming requirements

Both of these felines shed moderately and have similar grooming needs. The only reason why Scottish Folds may be more demanding in this respect is that they can have longer fur. In that case, you would have to brush them more frequently. 

British Shorthairs and Scottish Fold cats need:

  • Brushing once or twice a week
  • Baths every 6–8 weeks (more frequently if someone in your family suffers from cat allergies)
  • Ears and eyes cleaned after every bath
  • Nails trimmed whenever necessary (although a scratching post will help take care of that)
  • Teeth brushed as frequently as possible (especially important for British Shorthairs, as they are prone to gingivitis)

British Shorthair and Scottish Fold dietary needs

Quality nutrition plays a vital role in keeping felines healthy throughout their life. Given that both of these breeds are prone to weight gain, and since obesity can worsen joint degeneration Scottish Folds are particularly susceptible to, choosing an adequate diet and feeding them controlled portions is crucial.

These felines need high-quality, protein-rich wet food and an occasional low-calorie treat or dry meal. When shopping for cat food products, pay special attention to the ingredient list and protein-fat-carb ratio. The ideal composition of cat food should be:

Nutrient group

Recommended percentage

Animal protein

At least 50%

Animal fat

Up to 20%


Less than 3%

Why do felines need a high-protein diet?

A diet consisting of a lot of meat and fish is closest to what felines eat in nature.

Image (c) Untamed

In nature, cats hunt mice, birds, slugs, frogs, larger insects—such as moths—and other small animals. A high-protein diet is closest to their natural eating habits. As obligate carnivores, cats need protein from whole meat and fish. These are the only source of essential amino acids, such as taurine, arginine, and lysine, that felines need for:

  • Energy
  • Strong muscles
  • Good vision
  • Organ maintenance
  • Healthy skin and coat

Check out the best sources of fat and protein:

Regular meals

Occasional treats (due to high fat content)

Why is fat necessary?

Animal fat delivers healthy fatty acids, such as omega-3 and omega-6, that help keep your feline fur soft and healthy. The best sources of good fats are:

  • Salmon
  • Mackerel
  • Sardines

Fat is also a natural taste enhancer and makes cat food more palatable. 

Why are carbs problematic?

Cats shouldn't eat too many carbs because they don't have the enzymes to process these nutrients. Carbs also offer fast-release energy that can make felines instantly hyperactive and slow and lazy after the initial high. It means that a portion of calories remains unburnt

Food that contains a lot of carbs can cause:

Although the following ingredients won't cause food poisoning, it would be best to avoid them:





Untamed comes to the rescue!

British Shorthairs and Scottish Folds need well-balanced nutrition that will keep them in shape, and Untamed wet food can help!

Our jelly and gravy meals contain top-quality meat and fish and are gently steamed to preserve all the nutrients and flavour while destroying harmful bacteria. We make sure your kitty gets all they need without compromising the taste, so even fussy eaters that usually frown at wet food keep asking for more. 

All our recipes are vet-formulated, as we want to ensure the correct protein-to-fat ratio and the necessary amount of vitamins and minerals for your furry companion. You can be sure that all Untamed meals are:

  • High-protein—Our food contains twice as much protein as most products on the market
  • Allergen-free—Common allergens are not to be found in our dishes, and we even offer single-source-protein meals—Chocka Chicken in Jelly and Tuck-in Tuna in Jelly—for kitties with severe food allergies and stomach sensitivities
  • Easily digestible—Our meals are grain-free, plant protein-free, and animal derivative-free. There is nothing your kitty will have trouble digesting

We also adhere to ethical practices, so we make sure that:

  • Our packaging is fully recyclable
  • We only cooperate with sustainable and cruelty-free suppliers
  • Our production and logistics operations are carbon-neutral

Tell us more about your feline companion—complete our quick online quiz and create a tailor-made meal plan that will suit your kitty's age, activity levels, and potential food sensitivities

What can you expect from Untamed?

Untamed offers balanced and complete meals for felines of all breeds and at all stages in life.

Image (c) Untamed

Untamed dishes are suitable for kittens, adults, and seniors, and they can help:

We don't need to toot our own horn—the effects cat parents report after they switched their felines to Untamed speak for themselves:


The Untamed effect

First week

  • Neater litter tray
  • Easier digestion
  • Great mood

First month

  • Better hydration
  • Even energy levels

Fourth month

Long term

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